Every Sunday I publish a newsletter featuring the best hacks and insights I discover on my journey as an entrepreneur and investor.
I flew to Dubai this week. The decision came after an opportunity to work with a Family Office presented itself through Django Digital. Oh, and my friends in Dubai had planned a beach party this weekend 🤷
I’m relieved to have escaped London. Stuck inside and starved of sunshine, the latest lockdown was incredibly frustrating - both socially and romantically. It got me thinking about loneliness and the broader decline in sexual activity amongst young adults:
The percentage of adults aged 20-24 who did not have sex in the past year increased from 11.7% in 2000–09 to 15.2% in 2010–14.
This dramatic decline is especially concerning among young men:
The percentage of sexually inactive men aged 18-24 increasing from 18.9% (2001) to 30.9% (2017), while the percentage for women increased from 15.1% to 19.1% over the same period.
The authors of “Why are fewer young adults having casual sex?” identify three factors creating this decline. For women, a significant part of it is driven by drinking less alcohol. For men, it’s driven by more time spent on video games and living at home with their parents longer. In other words, male attractiveness is a big source of the decline. While women haven’t changed in their desirability, the male dating pool has gotten weaker. 📉
An interesting factor to consider is how men and women perceive attractiveness. Data from OkCupid shows how men are quite balanced in their ratings of women, while women are more harsh.
Another interesting factor is how cultural events and dating apps have created a new sex culture. Today, one very attractive male can connect with many more women than ever before. Perhaps fewer men are having sex with more women. That was Robin Hanson’s thesis in 2019. 📱
It’s concerning to think how a young man might reverse this decline. "Get a job and apartment" is much easier said than done, especially if your only qualification is a philosophy degree and you’re deep in student debt. Not only this, but the psychological consequences of foregoing our most fundamental impulse must be severe!
Thinking more broadly, Nat Eliason considers how the last year of lockdowns has affected people’s mental health. Spending a year socially isolated, sexually devoid, and indoors, seems like a perfect recipe for anxiety, rage and depression. 😫
While I’m grateful to be financially independent and to have dodged most of lockdown by living abroad, I don't know how to help young men increase their mate value. Nat suggests training more young men to be plumbers, electricians and woodworkers. His logic is that it would get them out of the house, get them physically fit, and make them more desirable mates. It’s a cool idea, but a little depressing…
For everyone else not in that demographic, could adopting a nomadic lifestyle like my own be a realistic solution? In today’s world, skills like graphic design and digital marketing can be learnt online quickly and effectively for little cost. Meanwhile, freelance platforms like Upwork have made it easier to market yourself and generate an income. And with more roles remote than ever before, young adults are able to benefit from cheaper rents outside of major cities. Not only this, but more and more hostels and co-living spaces are offering social opportunities and community elements.
I recognise it's ambitious. Remote work increases isolationism in some people and works against "getting out there and being active". But perhaps the digital nomad lifestyle can revitalise our generation’s sex lives? 💘
I’d love to hear from you
Nomad News This Week
🇲🇺 Mauritius expands its Covid-19 vaccination programme to offer the vaccine to long-stay travellers, and the free visa is the easiest to apply for yet.
👨💻 LinkedIn is building a freelancer marketplace to compete with Upwork and Fiverr. It’s awesome to see LinkedIn capitalising on the remote work trend - if you’re not already active on the platform be sure not to neglect it! Admittedly, my profile could do with an update!
⛽️ BP announces hybrid remote work for 25,000 employees. The oil & gas supermajor plans a 60-40 split between office and home for this summer as Covid-19 begins to ease. Interesting to see whether others will follow and whether the hybrid model will stick!
What I’ve Been Reading
🤓 The $10M Weekend Fund’s Tech Stack. Something we help our VC clients with at Django Digital is creating and managing their technology processes - with a high emphasis on automation. The Weekend’s stack is a simple and practical start - Spark for email, Airtable for knowledge, Zapier for automation, Slack to communicate, Vimcal for calendar, and AngelList for everything else. (1,300 words).
🦄 A Guided Journey To The Metaverse: Definition, History, and Application of NFT's. “The true value and full application of NFT's may not be realized until we accept and enter digital worlds. Perhaps NFTs are the bridge that move many of us closer to exploring these realms which we've only given credence to in books and movies, but are becoming more commonplace everyday.” (3,100 words).
⚠️ NFTs Are a Dangerous Trap by Seth Godin. TLDR; Creators will become promoters and waste time. Buyers are oblivious to the fact there’s an unlimited supply. The rest of us will pay due to the enormous energy costs of crypto/blockchain. (1,000 words).
💉 Oxford’s latest Covid-19 cure, Tocilizumab. After both my grandparents got covid last week, I’ve been reading about the medicine they’re being given. Thankfully, it seems to be doing a great job and they’re nearly out of hospital! “We now know that the benefits of tocilizumab extend to all COVID patients with low oxygen levels and significant inflammation.” (1,000 words).
🔮 MIT Technology’s 10 most important technologies this year and a short summary of each. Messenger RNA vaccines. GPT-3. TikTok recommendation algorithms. Lithium-metal batteries. Data trusts. Green hydrogen. Digital contact tracing. Hyper-accurate positioning. Remote everything. Multi-skilled AI. (1,800 words).
What I’ve Been Listening To
💎 Naval Ravikant interviews Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin. Two of the most influential guys around online. I’ve already re-listened to parts of this interview and I’d highly recommend it to help understand Ethereum, BTC, NFTs and more. (2h 12m).
🧬 Science Vs on Immune Boosting. Vitamin D, Zinc, Vitamin C, ginger, elderberry, echinacea, smoothies… and more. This episode gives some practical advice and insight into immune hacks, and the ways of the pharmaceutical industry. Conclusion: focus on sleep and exercise. (32m 30s).
🎵 20 Minute VC interviews Spotify founder Daniel Ek. As one of the best CEOs around, with a lot to learn from, I enjoy all interviews with Daniel. I love his thinking around mental models and decision-making, and it’s really a shame how bad his reputation is amongst upcoming music artists! (50m 40s).
🖼 Trapital interviews Micah Johnson the ex-MLB player turned artist. Micah just sold $1M+ NFTs in 1 minute. This was an interesting insight into how creators and artists are thinking about NFTs and how the trend might be best leveraged by creatives and investors amongst the black community. (36m 09s).
The Tools I’ve Discovered
🦉 Owltail is a free podcast discovery tool. I like their podcast recommendations which provide short annotations for individual episodes (a quote, three key points, background on the guest). It’s a useful and digestible format.
📈 Exploding Topics is a website that surfaces rapidly growing topics. I think it’s worth checking regularly to be aware of the latest trends. I like to keep an eye on the ‘Business’ and ‘Technology’ categories.
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